Sunday, 29 March 2009

Tea induced euphoria and other stuff

Even though I received one of those "R" things this morning (well technically it was yesterday but I didn't check the email until today) I'm still in a good place. The sun is shining, I had a lovely walk with the dog (even though I did have to drag him away from the flirty little collie down the street that was giving him the glad eye. the minx!)I can smell the cake that is cooking in the oven and I'm feeling optimistic about the future. "What's she on?" I hear you cry. Tea is the answer. I've had nothing stronger than a good old fashioned cuppa for hours so my good mood is induced by nothing stronger than that.
Remember that poetry that I submitted a while ago? Well that was also "R'd" this week but hey ho, that's life I suppose. No point letting it get you down. Just take it on the chin and get on with it.
Maybe you also remember that I said that I would submit seven things in March. Well I did but I don't feel good about it. Which wuld be better? Submitting seven mediocre pieces just to say that I'd achieved what I set out to do or one good piece that's pitched just right. I'm thinking that it's the latter.
Therefore, from now on I will be concentrating on quality rather than quantity. I'm not saying that the pieces that I've sent out weren't ready to go or weren't pitched at what I thought was the right market. I think that they were all fine and I wouldn't have sent them if I didn't think that they were ready but I do think that I need to adopt the mantra that I use in my day job. It's not a new thing and I'm sure you've all heard it before but it's "Work smarter not harder."
I don't have a lot of time for writing although I do spend a lot of time thinking about writing. I think that the crux of the previous paragraph is that I need to work smarter in my writing in general. I need to organise my time and my efforts better. I need to be more oganised.
Sadly for me being organised is not one of my strong points. Having said that I am organised with the day job.
Maybe there is hope for me.

Thursday, 26 March 2009

Just a thought

I was thinking today about sites that allow you to publish your work and receive feedback from fellow writers. I don't want to single any of them out by name because I don't belong to any, never have, so don't know the good from the bad. I have heard of instances where some writers have received negative comments that might have been given for personal reasons rather than the write (attempt at interesting play on words) reasons.
I'm curious also as to what benefit it is to anyone for me to say that I like their writing. It doesn't matter if I like it because if they are trying to get their work pulished surely what matters is if an editor likes it.
It was just a thought.

Sunday, 22 March 2009

Ironing out wrinkles.

I've just spent the last hour or so trying to iron the wrinkles out of chapter 4 and I think it's finally at a place where I want it to be. I'm leaving it behind for now anyway. I don't want to over analyse it. I want to get the whole thing into more or less the shape that I want it to be in before I get into the fine detail. I thnk I've earned the cup of tea that I'm going to make when the kettle boils who knows I may even have a biscuit. But hang on I don't want to ruin my apetite just in case either Son Number 1 or Number 2 turns up with chocolates. The dogs already got me q bottle of port. Clever doggie. Just in case any of you think that I actually believe my dog, clever though he is could go to the shop and buy alcohol I don't. He's not old enough for a start. No, my beloved Himself bought the port on the off chance that his sons disappoint me today. And trust me, if they disappoint me they will be his sons.
Anyway, getting back to BTL, I'll carry on with the ironing after my cuppa.

Friday, 20 March 2009

Slapping may be required

I'm trawling through BTL again doing fine tuning etc and currently stuck on chapter 4. It's odd because as I'm going through it this time I'm noticing things that I didn't the last time. I guess that just shows that you could probably tweak forever but I think that this will be the final time that I go through the book in its entirity.
I have two other books in the planning stage and I have been thinking of one of them quite a lot recently and feel like I want to get on with it but I am determined to finish BTL first. I've told you all a dozen times about how I flit from one thing to another but I'm not going to do that this time. having said that though, I need to make sure that I don't rush through BTL just to get to the next one.
Patience was nevr my strong suit.
If I mention working on my other book before BTL is finished I want you all to give me a virtual slap.
On a different note, I heard that I sold a story today which is always good news. It was a story that I sent out in October of last year. I'm yet to hear anything positive about anything submitted this year.

Wednesday, 18 March 2009

Must be more interesting

When I popped over here just now I was a bit disappointed to see that I've lost a follower. While I don't judge the success of my blog by the number of people that follow it the fact that someone decide to not follow it any more made me ask why. Mabe I need to be more interesting.
Thanks to the rest of you that are hanging in there.

Wednesday, 11 March 2009

Quick turnaround

On Monday I posted a story to People's Friend so they received it at best yesterday morning. It was back on my doormat this morning. When this happens, do you think the story is even read?

Tuesday, 10 March 2009

Not A B or C

Before I became disillusioned with my writing course I had to write a short story as an assignent which I duly did. My tutor said that it was good and suitable for magazine A and that I should send it to them which I did. They didn't want it so I sent it to magazine B. They didn't want it either so just after Christmas I sent it to magazine C. This "good" story was returned to me again this week. I can't give it away.

Sunday, 8 March 2009

Chapter by Chapter

Okay, true to my word I have looked at BTL with a view to composing a chapter by chapter breakdown of the book. I'm doing this because I assume that if I am lucky enough to get someone interested in it they are going to want to see such a breakdown. The trouble is that I have never done this before and I wondered if anyone could give me any advice. Which would be a better approach?
A) Dark house. Where is this place? Why is she here?
B) Margot finds herself in a dark unfamiliar house. She has no idea where she is or why she is there.
C) Both of these are wrong and there's another way that I should be doing it.
Any advice would be most welcome.
Just for the record, I don't know where the house is or why there are no lights on. I don't know why she is there and I've never met Margot.
Oh and so much for that lovely weather that I talked about earlier. That has swiftly been replaced by wind, rain and even a bit of snow. Don't you just love this country?

Time of Year

It must be the time of year for me to be a bit lethargic writing wise. I wasn't blogging 2 years ago and I didn't keep a diary that year but last year I posted on 6th March that I was struggling to get my head around writing. How very odd. I think it was around the 4th/5th march this year that I said the same thing.
Anyway, I am happy to report that the lethargy has lifted, it is a beautiful morning up here in the far North (not only past Watford but Leeds as well) and now that the kettle has boiled and I can have a cup of tea I'm going to settle down to a couple of hours writing. I did start something yesterday for the Harper Collins competition on the subject of Mothers so I might work on that later. For now it's another look at the start of BTL. I'm doing it this time with a view to compiling a chapter plan. There are a couple of other things that I want to do but I'll see how we go.

Thursday, 5 March 2009

Nothing much

I came over here with the intention of posting but now that I'm here I don't know what to say. I don't know if I have anything interesting to say. Some of you may say that I rarely do. But since when did that stop me from talking to friends?
I submitted something earlier in the week but I can't remember what it was. I could look it up on my spreadsheet but the way my day's been going if I tried to do two things at once the computer would probably blow up. Oh I remember it was a letter to a magazine. Okay so it probably wasn't a real submission but I had something to say and, if accepted, the reward will be worth the effort. There's a competition that I want to enter and I worked on that earlier. I'm looking forward to having a look at BTL this weekend but I'm still not sure what the next stage will consist of so maybe I should wait and give it a bit of thought first. I almost wrote a poem at lunchtime. It started off as random thoughts that turned into a verse. The second verse however didn't flow so well. I may look at it again, probably in the distant future when I come across where it was scrawled into my notebook.
That's it really. I'll try and have something more interesting next time.

Monday, 2 March 2009

3 times not a charm

I'm sure I'm not the only one amongst us that received that email today, you know the one, it said that Best will shortly be stopping their Fiction slot.
I received that email three times today.
I'm particularly disappointed by the one that they'd had since August.